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ILPS Philippines Statement on the arrest of Sarah Abellon-Alikes

February 16,2017

The Philippines Chapter of the International League of Peoples' Struggle (ILPS), the biggest democratic formation of its kind in the world, strongly condemns the illegal arrest, detention and filing of trumped-up criminal charges against indigenous peoples leader and peace advocate Sarah Abellon-Alikes.

As a pioneer of the Cordillera People’s Alliance (CPA) and board member of the Regional Development Center - Katinnulong dagiti Umili ti Amianan (RDC-Kaduami), Sarah seeks the protection of ancestral lands and the environment against destructive projects such as large mines and dams.

At least 118 energy project applications and 102 mining applications are in the region in addition to the existing three large mines and three mega-dams. People's resistance to these projects are being met with increased militarization under a US-designed "counter-insurgency program" and declared "all-out war".

Like the ILPS-Philippines, Sarah fully supports the peace talks between the Government of the Philippines (GPH) and the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) to address the roots of the armed conflict in the country. Like her, we assert previous agreements such as the the Comprehensive Agreement on the Respect of Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law (CARHRIHL) and the proposals for a Comprehensive Agreement on Social and Economic Reforms (CASER).

We call on all peace-loving peoples of the world in urging the Philippine government to stop its senseless "all-out war" and US-designed counter-insurgency program and to continue the GRP-NDFP peace talks and adhere to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP) and all the major Human Rights instruments that it is a party and signatory of. ###

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